June 2020

SGV leads BCCP webinar on business disruption  SGV Partners held a webinar on addressing business disruption for the British Chamber of Commerce Philippines (BCCP) on 18 May. The webinar discussed enterprise resiliency, economic transmission stimulus, and tax and economic measures. Participants included representatives from member companies of the BCCP and other executives from the business sector.   Consulting Partner and ASEAN Finance Fields of Play Leader Kaye S. Macaisa (KSM) presented recommended areas that enterprises can focus on for more effective COVID-19 crisis management. She shared tips on how enterprises and other businesses can sustain business continuity, build their resilience, and prepare for the future after the pandemic.   KSM, CGL and CCO presenting at the BCCP webinar  Financial Services Consulting and Government and Public Sector Partner Christian G. Lauron (CGL) discussed the bank stimulus transmission framework and its impact on citizens, small businesses and corporations in the Philippines. Tax Partner Cheryl C. Ong (CCO) spoke on tax and economic measures under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Republic Act No. 11469). She explained the measures that the members of the business sector may qualify for and avail themselves of under the Act.    The event’s organizing team included Global Compliance and Reporting (GCR) Partners Aaron C. Escartin (ACE) and Maricris U. See (MUS). ACE was also the moderator of the webinar.   For more information about BCCP webinars and events, please email info@britcham.org.ph.  
Back to the Office reminders  As we transition to general community quarantine (GCQ) and gradually reopen our offices, SGV has issued the following guidelines to ensure the health and wellbeing of staff during the pandemic.   SGV Health and Location Tracker  All SGV partners and staff are required to report their health status and work location on a daily basis (excluding personal and rest days) via the SGV Health and Work Location Tracker. All are required to accomplish the form at the start of each working day, whether working from home or reporting physically to SGV or a client’s office.   Those who have been approved by their Partners-in-charge (PICs) to report to SGV or a client’s office (including meetings outside the office and meetings with government agencies) should fill out the form upon entering their work location and indicate their temperature reading as captured by the security or health officer at the entrance to the premises. Those who are working from home are not required to indicate their temperature.  Compliance will be monitored and those who fail to accomplish the form will be called for disciplinary action classified under offenses against security, safety and public order. All the information requested in the form will be regarded as private and confidential in compliance with the Data Privacy Act of 2012 and its implementing rules and regulations.  Flexible Time Schedule (FlexTime)  The SGV Talent Team has also implemented the FlexTime schedule which is an arrangement where employees are required to complete the standard work hours (9.5 hours, including 1.5-hour lunch break) in the office but are free to determine their arrival and departure time. This schedule will take effect upon the reopening of our offices and is subject to the approval of one’s manager and Partner-in-charge (PIC). Adopting an intermittent routine to fulfill the 8 working hours in a day is not allowed. As our business hinges on our service to clients, we must be available during the Firm’s core working hours and continue delivering exceptional client service.   The SGV Talent Team would also like to remind all of the Flexible Attire policy aimed to balance professionalism and comfort. Below are the only acceptable office attires for men and women inside the SGV offices:      Everyone is encouraged to remain vigilant and follow the health and safety precautions advised by the World Health Organization and the SGV Talent Team. For more COVID-19 related advisories and updates, please visit the SGV COVID-19 Information Hub. 
SGV JBS joins ASEAN tax briefing  SGV’s Japan Business Services (JBS) team participated in an EY ASEAN tax webinar titled “Navigating COVID-19: Now. Next. Beyond.” on 27 May. Conducted in Japanese, the webinar discussed the tax implications of the pandemic in various countries. Over 400 Japanese executives and tax professionals from Japan and from ASEAN member states attended the briefing.   JBS and Tax Associate Director Hiroshi Nakagawa presented the latest Philippine tax, finance and legal changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as ECQ-related BIR issuances on tax exemptions, extended statutory deadlines, and tax audit and controversy measures. Hiro also gave a brief overview of the stimulus packages of various government organizations, including the Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) and the Pag-IBIG Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF). He also explained the government’s social amelioration program (SAP) and small business wage subsidy, including moratorium on loan payments and rent concessions for MSMEs.    Title slide of the presentation at the SGV JBS webinar  Hiro also explained the salient features of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE). He emphasized the Act’s corporate tax rate reduction and extension period.
FSO conducts BCM COVID-19 webinar    The SGV Financial Services Organization Banking and Capital Markets (FSO BCM) sector conducted a webinar titled “Impact of COVID-19 on significant PFRS requirements” on 15 May. The session provided relevant and helpful insights on the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on significant PFRS 9 - Financial Instruments requirements. Financial Services Consulting and Government and Public Sector Partner Christian G. Lauron (CGL) moderated the session. Speakers included FSO Senior Director Redgienald Radam, FSO Senior Director Deofel Gil Usuquen and CGL. Nearly 300 finance, risk management, internal audit and compliance professionals from different financial institutions attended the webinar.   Speakers at the FSO BCM webinar  Speakers discussed the application of expected credit loss (ECL) requirements that incorporate the effects of the pandemic and the various government relief programs in the measurement of ECL, accounting for forbearance and debt modifications and related disclosure requirements on ECL. The session also covered recently issued BSP guidelines on the reclassification of financial assets under PFRS 9. The speakers also discussed fair value measurement in volatile and uncertain markets.   The webinar is the first in a series conducted by SGV FSO. The succeeding webinars will cover related topics on insurance, health and pension, wealth and asset management, and the banking and capital markets sectors. Those interested in attending may contact Redgienald Radam at Redgienald.G.Radam@ph.ey.com or Mary Catherine Biliran at Mary.Catherine.M.Biliran@ph.ey.com. 
TFM leads PICPA tax webinar     Tax Partner Thyrza F. Marbas (TFM) led a tax briefing hosted by the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA) on 18 May. TFM discussed the latest Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) and Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) issuances, including relevant court cases.  PICPA tax webinar invitation   She also discussed tax reform packages, particularly the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act (CITIRA) [HB No. 4157] and the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE). She explained their salient provisions and impact on PEZA- and BOI-registered companies.
LLL speaks at MACCII webinar  Global Compliance and Reporting Partner Hentje Leo L. Leaño (LLL) led a tax webinar titled “Emerge Prepared after the Quarantine: Be Abreast with the Quarantine-related BIR Issuances and the Extended Tax Deadlines” for the Metro Angeles Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (MACCII) on 29 May. The webinar covered quarantine-related BIR issuances and extended tax deadlines, relating to donations, documentary stamp tax on qualified loans, authority-to-print, receipting/invoicing guidelines, qualified imported goods, acceptance of tax payments, extensions of the due dates for filing and payment of tax returns, and tax documents submission and payments to local government units. LLL also spoke on tax-related issuances of the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA).  MACCII tax webinar invitation  MACCII President Lourdes Connie Tayag welcomed over 50 participants to the webinar. MACCII Director Marco Fernando Ng hosted the session and MACCII Vice President for Economic Affairs Violeta “Bing” Gonzales delivered the closing remarks.   
Talent holds Wellness webinars  Dr. Niño Jose Mateo  The SGV Talent Team hosted wellness webinars for partners and staff on 13 and 15 May. Led by Dr. Niño Jose Mateo, the webinars aimed to help participants protect their mental health during the pandemic.    The webinar for partners titled "What's wrong with NOT being normal?" focused on personal wellbeing and on the partners’ roles as corporate leaders. Drawing on personal reflections and evidence-based knowledge, Dr. Mateo discussed life lessons to help participants navigate an uncertain future more effectively and with greater compassion.  The webinar for staff titled “The Wellness Playbook: A webinar on the ultimate guide to mental health” began with a discussion on the sources and effects of stress during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). Dr. Mateo then presented five principles for mental health care during the pandemic namely: physical health and safety, balance, intentionality, positivity, and meaningful connections. He also emphasized the importance of eating healthy and engaging in fitness activities, among other ways to cope with stress. He also encouraged participants to seek help when they are feeling mentally or emotionally tired.    Title slides of the presentations at the wellness webinars   Dr. Mateo is an associate professor of the Counseling department at the De La Salle University, where he also earned his PhD in Counseling Psychology, with high distinction. He is a certified counseling psychologist and a certified Choice Theory or Reality Therapy practitioner. He is a registered and practicing clinical psychologist and a registered guidance counselor.  
FSO Senior Director receives 2019 Elijah Watt Sells Award     FSO Senior Director Leslie Anne Huang  Financial Services Organization (FSO) Senior Director Leslie Anne Huang received the 2019 Elijah Watt Sells Award from the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). Leslie was one of the 137 recipients of the award who obtained a cumulative average score above 95.50 across all sections of the Uniform CPA Examination, passed all four sections on her first attempt, and completed the test in 2019.   The AICPA is the world’s largest member association representing the accounting profession. The Elijah Watt Sells Award program was established by the AICPA in 1923 to recognize outstanding performance on the CPA Exam. Sells was one of the first CPAs in the U.S. and played a key role in advancing professional education within the profession.  Congratulations, Leslie!  
EY-Parthenon and SGV conduct PRA webinar  EY-Parthenon and SGV partnered with the Philippine Retailers Association (PRA) for the conduct of a webinar titled “Navigating Retail Businesses beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic” on 11 May. The virtual session discussed how COVID-19 is accelerating disruption in the retail industry in ASEAN; how retail markets will shift after the pandemic; and the main growth drivers and leading operational strategies that businesses can implement to address immediate and long-term issues. PRA President Rosemarie B. Ong welcomed over 200 participants to the session, including members of the PRA and executives from the local retail industry.     Olivier Gergele, Ashutosh Deshmukh and BTB presenting at the PRA webinar   EY-Parthenon Partner Olivier Gergele provided a comprehensive overview of the global and local economic impact of COVID-19 on retail, such as the growth of online businesses, the emergence of new business models like dark kitchens, and the projected ASEAN economic outlook, among others.   EY-Parthenon Associate Partner Ashutosh Deshmukh discussed five areas that retailers can consider in navigating the impact of the pandemic: building an online business, driving supply chain resilience, expanding product offerings, taking advantage of lower valuations to achieve strategic acquisition, and driving agility and empowering organizations for fast local decision-making.    SGV Assurance Partner Belinda T. Beng Hui (BTB) discussed the EY resilience framework. Emphasizing the importance of scenario planning and implementation planning, she presented possible economic scenarios and industry forecasts that companies can study when developing their future operating strategies. She explained approaches that organizations can adopt such as identifying and addressing specific areas for improvement, and benchmarking current practices against the industry’s leading practices.     Speakers at the PRA webinar with moderator Rolly Pagaspas  The event’s local organizing team included BTB, SGV Strategy and Transaction Services Partner Ramon D. Dizon and Strategy and Transaction Services Partner Marie Stephanie Tan-Hamed.  
LJM speaks at IIAP Inspire Series    SGV Chief Risk Officer, EY ASEAN Regional Risk Management Leader and Consulting Partner Leonardo J. Matignas Jr. (LJM) was a guest at the #AskAnInternalAuditor: Inspire Series of the Institute of Internal Auditors Philippines (IIAP) on 13 May. The series is part of the IIAP’s celebration of International Internal Audit Awareness Month and aims to provide a channel where members can ask IA-related questions to gain more insights about the profession.   Having been a professional for 38 years, LJM inspired viewers with anecdotes of his experiences in various industries. He also shared tips on how to improve and develop internal audit skills and stay relevant. Emphasizing the values of passion and continuous learning, he encouraged viewers to seek opportunities to effectively hone their skills and competencies.    LJM during the #AskAnInternalAuditor: Inspire Series   LJM advised IAs to develop strong and flexible relationships with their auditees. He proposed, “When developing recommendations, adopt an approach where you can share the glory with the auditees, like conducting facilitated sessions. This way, the auditees will own the process and take accountability for the process.”    He explained that IAs should maximize remote auditing to ensure that management controls are still working during the pandemic. As professionals who examine all facets of an organization, IAs can also support a company’s business continuity management (BCM) in making sure that the appropriate protocols and action plans are carried out smoothly and in a well-coordinated manner.   LJM ended the session by advising aspiring IAs to “Be patient in gaining experience. Being an internal auditor takes time. Do not run away from the profession prematurely, even if you do not feel comfortable, because you might be running away from the profession that is really suited for you.”